Chile has joined 37 other counties on United State’s Visa Waiver Program list, allowing Chilean passport holders with both an approved Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) and an e-passport to visit the United States without a nonimmigrant visitor visa.  This means that Chilean nationals seeking to enter the U.S. for pleasure or business will no longer have to apply for a B1/B2 visa. The original implementation date was May 1, 2014.  Vice President Joe Biden accelerated the implementation date to March 31, 2104.

Chile is the first Latin American country to qualify for the Visa Waiver program, and it is only one of five countries who may avoid the onerous H-1B cap by filing an employment-based non-immigrant visa, aka “Trade Visa.” The other four Trade Visa Countries are Canada (TN), Mexico (TN, Australia (E-3), and Singapore (H-1B1).